YOU’VE GOT TO HOLD YOUR MOUTH RIGHT
BY DAVID H. BAYER
Going fishing with my father was the highlight of any summer while growing up as a small boy in Kentucky. Often my Pastor/Father, E. J. Bayer, would be catching fish as fast as he could bait the hook and
I and my brothers would be just watching without so much as a nibble. I remember well his answer when asked why he could fill his stringer when no one else was getting a bite, ” You’re just not holding your mouth right,” he would say. Years later I understood what I was too inexperienced to comprehend as a nine-year-old fisherman. You have to do it in order to get it right!
As a novice soul winner I tried Outreach on Monday through Saturday hoping to find the optimum time and occasion for success. In utter frustration some years later, as a young Pastor, I prayed for God to give me the formula that worked. It was as if He audibly spoke to my desire and said it is as simple as 1,2,3. As I began to feel the current of the Spirit moving He said, “Keep it simple.” The reason most Outreach programs fail is because they are too complicated and hard to maintain for a long period of time.
People just quit because they feel they can’t get it right. Sadly, due to this a large number of churches have no real organized Outreach at all, but stumble along hoping some hungry soul will find their church and the truth.
All Revival-minded Pastors want growth and in order to fulfill the great commission are searching for tools to get the job completed. For the last fifteen years I have been using “The 1,2,3 of Absentees” that was born from my desire to reach the unchurched in our community. We have coordinated this Outreach/Revival tool in Evansville for the last 13 years and God has blessed by multiplying the attendance by almost four times.
This simple program is as follows: SATURDAY VISITATION POLICY
1. Sunday School Staff and/or Bus Staff be at church ready to go on Saturday morning.
2. Every class must be represented by at least one teacher.
3. The Sunday school Superintendent will have the living file information which contains all visitors and absentees names, addresses and phone numbers. All teachers and bus laborers have their own copy.
4. Each class representative will make the contacts given to their group or bus.
5. A time of prayer will be allowed before visitation begins.
1. Upon a student’s first absence a card will be sent by the teacher or group leader and a visit on Saturday.
2. Upon a student’s second consecutive absence a phone call from the teacher or group leader plus a visit on Saturday.
3. Upon a student’s third consecutive absence a personal visit from the teacher or group leader should be made earlier in the week before Saturday.
THIS WILL WORK IF YOU WILL WORK IT!
“‘Well, thee,’ said his master, ‘go out into the country lanes and out behind the hedges and urge anyone you find to come, so that the house will be full.'” (Luke 14:23 TLB)
While it is not feasible to get into the fine-tuning of the rogram this is the basics of the concept and while I am aware there are other fine outreach programs this is the one that has worked for me. I hope it might be a blessing to your efforts toward a harvest of souls.
THE ABOVE MATERIAL WAS PUBLISHED BY THE INDIANA APOSTOLIC TRUMPET, OCTOBER 2001, PAGE 4. THIS MATERIAL IS COPYRIGHTED AND MAY BE USED FOR STUDY & RESEARCH PURPOSES ONLY.